Murder in Space (1985)

Article 5065 By Dave Sindelar
Date: 1-30-2016
Directed by Steven Hilliard Stern
Featuring Wilford Brimley, Michael Ironside, Martin Balsam
Country: Canada / USA
What it is: TV-Movie Science Fiction/Mystery

A spaceship with an international crew of nine members is returning to Earth after a trip to Mars. However, the death of a female cosmonaut aboard the ship raises concerns about a possible alien virus, but then evidence begins to mount that she was murdered…

Yes, it’s a bit corny, but then, I’d rather expect that from an attempt to cross-pollinate the science fiction and old-fashioned murder mystery genres (with just a dollop of international intrigue). This TV-Movie was originally shown on Showtime without the ending as a part of a competition for people to pick out the murderer, a task which initially seems easy (after all, there are only eight suspects) but becomes more difficult as several other people are killed as well, and not all by the same hand. Wilford Brimley is quite entertaining as the director of the project who has to sort out the mystery as well as deal with the international repercussions of the murders. The movie doesn’t have much of a reputation, but I enjoyed it enough to forgive it its flaws; the production is a little chintzy, it descends into melodrama and soap opera at times, and, as mentioned before, it does get corny. Nevertheless, I found it fun.

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